2023 is definitely looking to be a much stronger year at the box office with quite a few releases going all the way to September. It’s getting kicked off by Marvel Studios’ latest, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania which is already eyeing a franchise-best opening weekend. It’s currently set to track $120M over a four-day period to use the Presidents Day holiday. The minimum expectation is $95M over three days with a conservative $105M to $110M by the end of the weekend.
While some may complain it won’t rival the recent releases, it’s a franchise-best as it’s 25% higher than Ant-Man and the Wasp‘s $75.8M opening in 2018. It’s also eyeing a $160M global start, which may include a long-awaited Chinese release between $35M to $55M. That would put it at a global launch at around $280M, but there is definitely potential. As it now opened to rather mixed to positive reviews with 63% on Rotten Tomatoes going by 70 reviews, it’s uncertain if that may impede its success a bit.
Though, many are looking forward to seeing who the “next Thanos” is going to be in Jonathan Majors‘s long-awaited arrival as Kang the Conqueror. There’s a chance the film may still score a positive A- CinemaScore and even the last B entries weren’t affected too negatively. Eternals was more of an indie film that may not work for everyone (especially with its long runtime and slow pacing), Thor: Love and Thunder took a very comedic direction even for Marvel’s standard and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness dipped its toe enough in the horror genre that may have general audiences a bit squeamish (going by general horror reception).
The film is currently tracking 15% behind Thor: Love and Thunder opened to $144.1M over three days last year and still went on to make $760M on a B+ CinemaScore. It might seem like a $700M run is possible for the film but that also depends on how frontloaded it is; which is not uncommon for any of these types of films. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever also managed an impressive $828M global run, so even as Marvel Studios remains quite experimental, they aren’t slowing down at the box office quite yet. Only time will tell as we enter Phase 5 and its comparably bigger projects.